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Road Trip

Chipley, FL

October 2, 2016

While on our road trip from Lafayette, LA to Jacksonville, FL, we stopped in Chipley, FL for the night. There are two main reasons why we decided to make our overnight stop in Chipley, FL and one huge surprise for us when we got there.

Why We Stopped in Chipley, FL (2 Reasons)

There are two reasons why our family wanted to stop in Chipley, FL on our road trip. We noticed that there is a state park for us to explore nearby, and we were able to find a decent hotel to stay at that has some good local restaurants nearby.

Amelia and Watermelons

Amelia loved the Watermelon signs for the upcoming Watermelon Festival

  1. Chipley, FL was a good almost halfway point between us and our destination. We found a nice, small hotel (a Quality Inn) to stay at in Chipley, and there were a few local places to for our family to have dinner. We actually stayed at this exact same hotel on the way back because we liked it so much.
  2. A few minutes from Chipley, FL is Falling Waters State Park. This state park has Florida’s largest waterfall. We plan on visiting Falling Waters State Park the following day before we head back on the road to finish out journey to Jacksonville, FL. (More about Falling Waters State Park in my next post).

Surprise in Chipley, FL

After we had checked into our room at the Quality Inn, we found KC’s Pizza and Grill in downtown Chipley. This was a great restaurant with fantastic prices and very kid friendly. See the video below for more about this place.

KC's Pizza & Grill in Chipley, FL

Ravioli Kid’s Meal

Once we finished our dinner, we decided that our kids need to run around and burn some energy since they had been in the car a lot today. Our son LOVES trains, and apparently Chipley, FL has a history of trains.

Chipley, FL trail tracks

Kids on the Train Tracks

Therefore, there is an old red caboose parked in one of the main parks in Chipley, FL next to the old railroad stations along the train tracks.

Sunset in Chipley, FL

Gazebo in the Park at sunset.

This caboose is for anyone to come and climb on or takes pictures next to. So that is what we did, and we had a blast doing so.

Red Caboose Climbing

Kids Climbing on the Red Caboose



I even climbed on top of the roof!

I made it to the top

Standing on the Red Caboose

Most of all, this made for a nice surprise for us, and we created some great family memories here in Chipley.

Follow more of our family travels on our YouTube channel, LaneVids, so that you can learn how to spend more quality time with your family and create a stronger bond with your family through travel.

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Florida Welcome Center I-10

August 26, 2016

On our road trip from Louisiana to Florida, we needed to stretch our legs and walk around. We stopped at the Florida Welcome Center at I-10 in Pensacola, FL. WOW! This welcome center was incredible!

Florida Welcome Center – Outside

As you drive up to the Florida Welcome Center, the first thing that you see is a huge plane statue. There are also a lot of other statues and photo opportunities in an around this welcome center.

Florida Welcome Center Airplane

Airplane outside the Florida Welcome Center

There is also a turtle statue thing right next to the entrance doors. I took a picture next to because it just looks pretty neat. The turtles name is Myrtle … #Myrtletheturtle

Florida Welcome Center Turtle Statue

#MyrtletheTurtle Statue

Florida Welcome Center – Inside

Next, when we entered the Florida Welcome Center, the kids found a small play area that was perfect for them. They had been riding in the car for so long and need some playtime. Since the kids found some fun toys to play with, my wife and I browse around at all of the brochures and pamphlets of things to do in Florida.

After a while, we take a fun picture with the NASA astronaut statue. We also get some free orange juice and grapefruit juice from the ladies at the help desk. You have to love anything that’s free, right?

Florida Welcome Center Astronaut statue

Our family with the NASA astronaut

In addition to taking a picture with the astronaut, there is also a picture booth that has some fun Florida themes. Here are a few of the pictures we took.

Florida Welcome Center Photo Booth

Jacques and I using the Photo Booth

Florida Welcome Center Photo Booth

Family Picture at the Photo Booth














Next we find the vending machines. They have an ice cream vending machine at the Florida Welcome Center. We decide that everyone needed a little treat before getting back on the road. We got our ice cream and take it outside to the picnic benches and enjoy some ice cream as a family.

Finally, it was time to leave the Florida Welcome Center. We get back into the car and continue our journey eastward through Florida. Here is a video that I put together of our time at the Florida Welcome Center so that you can get a better idea of everything that they have to offer here.

Follow our family road trip adventures on our YouTube channel, TheFunnyrats. Also you can follow us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and/or Snapchat.

Nature Park – Camp Salmen Nature Park – Slidell, LA

August 22, 2016

Camp Salmen Nature Park was not on our radar for our family road trip. It was a nice surprise when we stumbled across this beautiful park. This summer our family went on a road trip from Lafayette, LA to Jacksonville, FL. On our way there, we stop in Slidell, LA at Camp Salmen Nature Park to eat lunch. We pick  lunch up at Sam’s (it’s cheap and easy, and we needed gas).

Camp Salmen Nature Park

Camp Salmen Nature Park

First, when we get lunch on the road, we usually stop at a park to eat. Then we let our kids run around on the playground to play to burn some energy. We are so surprised by Camp Salmen Nature Park. It is over 100 acres of nature, a historical site, awesome playground, great hiking trails, and more.

Things to Do at Camp Salmen Nature Park

Most of all, our kids had a fun time exploring what we could of Camp Salmen Nature Park. The playground was a lot of fun, and I thought the old trading post historic site was really neat. There is a pond area with a decent view and lots of old oak trees for us to climb on.

My wife climbing on a tree at Camp Salmen.

My wife climbing on a tree at Camp Salmen.

I wish that we could have hiked on some of the hiking trails while we were there. We simply ran out of time. We were needing to get to our hotel down highway I-10 to continue our road trip. Therefore, I see us coming back to this park to visit longer. We only were able to see probably about 15% of this amazing nature park.

In addition, our family loves to go hiking. Due to these time constraints and the fact that it was a hot a humid day in Louisiana, we did not get to hike the trails. Finally, here is a fun video of our family’s time exploring this nature park.